Friday, October 29, 2010

A quick 'half' at the University Staff Club

I had a quick meeting at the University Staff Club at 5pm the other day - and I wish I had more meetings out there. It is set in a beautiful old house, with a dynamite beer selection, idyllic gardens with river border, and packed wtih intellectuals.  Lots of thought going on out there!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

We Banded Together...

Jeepers - we held a nice concert in Hagley Park on Saturday.  Nice, as in I wasn't scared of the crowd.  It pretty much consumed me for 6 weeks, but was worth the while...with a good crowd of 140,000 turning up to some classic old school (and a few new school) NZ bands playing for 8 hours.  ChCh was treated, and loved it, and it really felt like we Banded Together and forgot the shakes (which were going on when everyone was shaking themselves, but nothing over a 3.5). 
 Check out the grannies below waiting for the Bats' set.
 Stewie from Family Guy was there. It was that kind of gig.
 My friend got confused for Dane Rumble. Dane (if you didn't know) is a NZ teenage heart throb. I didn't know that till Band Together.  He's on the right.
And along with the new, and 'pop', we had the old, and 'Pop' - 'pop until you almost drop - but you've still got it in you to keep people smiling'.  Ray Colombus (He's a Mod circa 1960 and Jordon Luck, Exponents, still playing at a summer pub near you) were dynamite and generous, and full of 'pow'.   The NZ music industry came together and it was great day for Canterbury.  Big Ups!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Up for Air

It has been a crazy month of work, new friendships, neglecting the dog, dodging earthquakes...but I've had some absolute highlights so have 'tumbled' them here...
 I met this guy - helped put on all his 'gear', then went riding - I mean 'racing' around a track at high speed...with horses breathing down my neck as they justled past to get past to run the home straight.  Wild!  I overcame my fear of horses. What beautiful creatures. Like Giant Digbys.  'Maxi-me' Digbys.
 We visited Fouson - an Ilam institution that Al and I had not yet experienced. They make their own pastry and dumpling wrappers - have truly surly service, and the whole place smacks of confidence - and good fresh taste.  Highly recommended for speed eating.
I spent the 10th of the 10th of the 10th with my Mum to celebrate her birthday.  We spent breakfast with her friends at the Rossendale Cafe (check out some of their baking through the cabinet...)
 Then I took my mother to Terrace Downs for one of their incredible 90minute spa facials...and it started to snow en-route! Mid Spring.  The Japanese style garden welcomed us with snow laden (sp?) blossom.
 and when we got inside we were greeted with relaxing tea for us before the treatment.  Having a facial as the snow fell felt extra good!
 Diwali season is upon us - and this event is new to Christchurch. It was so special, as the Indian lights festival celebrates renewal - and it was the first public space event in Christchurch since the earthquake...and brought a beautiful sense of colour and happiness to the still slightly 'on edge' town.  Look at those Spring buds!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Sockburn - its been swell...

Today we left our temporary offices in Sockburn for the flash ones in the 'city'.  Here are a few images that I think epitomise the great suburb that has looked after us for a month during the quake aftermath.  Why, thank you, Sockburn. 

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Lunch at Black Estate

We had our Wellington distributor down for the weekend, (Jeff), with this his hilarious wife Tanya.  They came out to Black Estate, and we made a casual lunch - eating up at the tractor shed, sitting in the sun, tasting the wines with...
 ...salmon, rocket and horseraddish cream baguettes, and cheese, chutney and green leaf ciabbatta finger sammies.
 Then Pen litterally 'whipped up' an apple cake for dessert with tea.
Sylvia, my niece, devoured a bag of jellybeans whilst climbing all over the wine cases. Pig in Mud!

Sockburn oh Sockburn - The 'Food' Post

We have one more week left of working in our temp offices at Sockburn Service Centre.  Here is a post of the food offering across the road (think double lane Main South Road - with a service lane for workers to pull up and grab something to eat). Its not somewhere to saunter in the sun.
 This is my most popular choice so far - have had it twice now. The 'meat' and pickle sandwhich from the Sockburn bakery. At $3.20 its the best value 'tie you over for lunch' deal of the lot.
 Next door to the bakery is a pretty good Persian takeaway. With these Piroski (like a samosa - vege or mince) sitting pretty in the pie warmer.  $3.00.
 Home made Persian Coconute Slice (as the sign says)...
 And Persian Baklava that looks pretty similar to other Baklava. But looks lovingly made by the wife of the man who runs the grill for the souvlakis!
He explained to me that his sauces are all home made and he tries to use organic produce.  Putting the 'soul into Sockburn'.
Others in the team have freqented the 'chippie' and brought them back to the tea room at the Service Centre (pool table and all)! Word is the chips are good, but stay clear of the the deep fried proteins.
 Whilst back at the bakery, I have been most smittened by the baking selection - the colour and the value have blown me away!
 More than once have CCC Events staff been seen with the non-cream version of this - for a mere $2.00 a lamington (steal)! And only 20c for cream (and jam)!
 I've included the lolly cake cos its so weird, but strangely iconic in NZ.  I never really got into it as a kid.  I guess its never too late to start.
The custard pies were understandably a yellow colour - but I was a little concerned with the yellow cream cheese icing on the carrot cake.  Gave that one a miss. So all in all - a unique range of goods are on offer if you are ever cruising past Sockburn Service Centre with a hunger on. Half the price of food in town,  a walk back in time, and good to have a completely different choice set for a month. Roger that Sockburn.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Honey...'I shrank Digby'

 I met this guy (Rupert) in the park today. Look familiar? A mini-me version of another 'hot' dog I know...